Home Orchids Cynorkis Fastigiata – Features, How to Grow and Care

Cynorkis Fastigiata – Features, How to Grow and Care

by gardeningit
Cynorkis Fastigiata

Cynorkis Fastigiata, with narrow linear-lanceolate leaves and white angel-fairy-like flowers, is a deciduous orchid that is native to Madagascar and nearby islands in the Indian Ocean. It may not be the most spectacular orchid, but it is known for its unusual-shaped, delicate flowers.

This orchid is an annual plant that completes its lifecycle within one growing season and then dies. Fresh new tubers sprout out in spring and bloom in summer or autumn. Being a self-pollinating species, it is an easy-growing plant that will colonize on its own in your terrarium!


  • Family: Orchidaceae
  • Subfamily: Orchidoideae
  • Genus: Cynorkis

About the Genus Cynorkis

Cynorkis is a genus from the orchid family, and it includes almost 160 species of flowering plants that are mostly known for their fluorescence. This genus is indigenous to tropical and South Africa and many islands of the Indian Ocean.

All the species of this genus are deciduous and go dormant for half the year. Because the flowers of this orchid family are far prettier than the other families, that’s why that these orchids are mostly used as ornamental plants for home gardens, indoors, and terrariums.

Origin and Distribution

Cynorkis Fastigiata is an orchid species that was first discovered by Thouars in the early 19th century, in 1822. It is a tropical plant that is native to Madagascar; 120 species of Cynorkis are indigenous to Madagascar. This orchid species was basically discovered in Seychelles. It grows mostly along forest edges, among the rocks, and at the bases of the tress of evergreen forests. It is also found in the Comoros, Mauritius, and Reunion islands.

Cynorkis Fastigiata Features

Foliage and Stem

This lovely orchid does not have too many leaves in its foliage. It grows 1-2 leaves per growing season that are either ovate or lanceolate-shaped. On some rare occasions, these leaves could be 3 in number. The pedicle of this little orchid is short, smooth, and glabrous. Each pedicle bears a single flower that grows on its tip. It has a raceme-arranged inflorescence; it has a single stalk that gives rise to many multiple pedicles.


Cynorkis Fastigiata is a deciduous plant that goes through the process of abscission every year. It loses its foliage and inflorescence during winters. These orchids shed their leaves and inflorescence during winters and then re-sprout new tubers during the growing season. This process of abscission saves the orchid’s water and energy during the cold season.


This pretty little Cynorkis Fastigiata grows to just 11 inches long. This small height makes it a perfect indoor ornamental plant for small spaces and corners. You can also place it anywhere inside your bedroom; it won’t occupy much space.


This pretty orchid species is mostly known for its strange and unknown-shaped flowers. The flowers of Cynorkis Fastigiata are white in color. The edge of the lips of its petals is faded and lavender-colored. Each petiole holds a single flower; altogether they are nearly 3cm long. The shape of its flowers is referred to as an angel-fairy-like shape, with a white-lavender petal forming a head over a red stigma, while the rest 4 white-colored petals form the body.

Temperature Tolerance

Cynorkis Fastigiata is a tropical plant that prefers to be placed in a warm environment. Its delicate foliage and flowers cannot bear extreme cold or extreme heat. The normal room temperature range is best suited for this little herb. If you live in a region where the temperature varies greatly throughout the year, then placing it indoors is the wise option.

Humidity Tolerance

This comely orchid is fond of high humidity. Its bright and showy inflorescence needs high humidity levels to thrive and blossom lushly. In nature, it grows below the trees’ canopy, litorals, and in the riverine, where the humidity levels are pretty much high, so it is obvious that it has high humidity tolerance.

Drought Resistance

Cynorkis Fastigiata is a drought-tolerant orchid that can survive harsh conditions. It saves water in its delicate and glossy stem during winters for such hard times. Although it is a tropical plant and it loves being watered, it is pretty much capable of surviving through dry periods of drought.

Pressure Tolerance

This species of lovely flowers is rather delicate and has fragile stem and pedicles. Protect it from being over-stressed and pressed by the weight of other plants in your collection. Place it in a place where it can grow unobstructedly and straight.

Disease and Pest Resistance

Another feature that makes this Cynorkis Fastigiata worth purchasing is that it is pest and disease-resistant. You do not have to worry about your little orchid getting any disease, and you need not buy any pesticides. This beaut can take its care on its own.


This herb from the Cynorkis genus is a moderately-growing orchid that takes a complete growing season to reach its mature height of 11 inches. Its growth rate majorly depends on the type of conditions you are keeping it in.


These pretty little orchids are not poisonous or toxic. You need not worry about your nibbling pet or your child getting close to these tiny herbs because these have been scientifically proven safe for humans and animals. But keep an eye for any damage to your delicate orchid if your pet or child gets too close to it.


Being all pretty and delicate, this plant needs a lot of care and maintenance. It is a high-maintenance plant. Growing this high-maintenance gorgeous orchid is a real challenge for the people out there having black thumbs, but it is an easy pie for those with green thumbs; they love taking care of attention-seeking plants whatsoever!


Cynorkis Fastigiata keeps its inflorescence and foliage for one to three months during its growing season. After this, it loses its leaves and prepares itself for the next growth period. It goes dormant every winter. It saves up water and energy for new tubers and buds. During dormancy, its stem turns brown or yellow, and all of its flowers and leaves dry and fall off.

Cynorkis Fastigiata Care

Cynorkis Fastigiata is a high-maintenance plant, just like its fellow species, that demands complete attention and care. It needs to be watered daily, misted frequently, grown in acidic soil, in a USDA hardiness zone of 8-9, fed with fertilizers every week, and placed in a shaded corner with diffused light.

Water Requirements

This tropical plant is a water-loving orchid; it loves being watered! In forests, it receives heavy rainfall every year, so its needs are automatically fulfilled. If you are planning to plant a Cynorkis Fastigiata, you should shower it regularly with the same amount of water. But watch out for clogged drainage holes; over-watering can close the drainage holes, causing the roots to rot. Decrease the watering frequency during winters when the plant has gone dormant.

Soil Requirements

Cynorkis Fastigiata grows best in red soil. Red soil is acidic in nature, having a pH of about 4.5-6.5. Maintaining this pH range is pretty easy. Just add two drops of vinegar to your watering can.

Well-drained soil is extremely important for this orchid’s proper growth. For better drainage and a better growth rate, mix the soil with a porous compost of shredded osmunda or gritty sand.


This charming little plant is fond of shades and diffused light. Place your Cynorkis Fastigiata in the complete shade; protect its flowers from burning in direct sunlight. You can place your tiny little orchid under the canopy of the large-sized plant collection of your home garden.

Temperature Requirements

The temperature range of 25-26°C during the day is optimal for this orchid’s growth, while at night, even a lower temperature of 19°C is tolerable. It has a diurnal range of 7°C.


These attractive tropical orchids prefer to grow in a highly humid atmosphere. These thrive best when the humidity levels are 80-85%. This is a normal humidity level in a forest, but our houses are much less humid. To keep its environment moist and humid, keep misting it frequently and place it in a group with other plants. You can also use a room humidifier.


Cynorkis Fastigiata is a foodie! You have to feed it every week during the growing season for its proper growth and sprouting. Nitrogen fertilizers are favored for spring to mid-summer, while fertilizers with high phosphate content are favored during late summer and autumn. There is no need to feed your orchid in winters when it is dormant.


It is never a bad idea to re-pot your orchid; your plant will thank you for this! After every year or two, re-pot your Cynorkis Fastigiata to a larger pot. Select the pot size according to the length of your orchid’s roots instead of its stem.


This is a species of self-pollinating plants that are easy-growing and colonize on their own. You can also propagate these pretty little delicate orchids through their seeds.

Final Thoughts

It’s not always about big green leaves and fresh glossy foliage; sometimes, some small adorable flowers are enough to add colors and a touch of nature inside homes. Cynorkis Fastigiata will make a lovely addition to your indoors and home gardens, and it will embellish its beauty with its extremely gorgeous and distinctive flowers.

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